Not to steal your thunder (awesome job BTW!!!)
Weellllll. It has been about three years since I have posted anything in this forum. In the depths of my depression- overcoming it and my social phobia seemed insurmountable, it was difficult at times to just bath or brush my teeth. Speaking was pure misery, every word was hinged on absolutist notions and intense fears. It was crushing.
I have worked for many, many years trying to control this disorder. Which meant me toilng away in therapy, getting down to brass-tacks. Also it meant figuring out what medication worked (and) what made me too loopy. I did/ still do read a lot of self-help books too.
So some really awesome successes:
Got a job requiring constant interaction with people, stayed at that job for close to three years.
Applied for the a full-time position at said company. Applied for a management position at said company. Applied for same management position at said company.
Went on a camping/kayaking trip with a bunch of guys, only one of whom I actually knew well.
Traveled on an international flight to visit my brother who resides in Poland.
Took walks in the neighborhood daily. Tapered off ALL of my psych meds with little negative repercussions.
Hung out at a close friend's house, where she had six other people visiting as well.
Exhibited some of my artwork. Won two merit awards for the pieces that I entered. Gloated in the fuzzy warmth of artistic recognition.
I have come a long way from the scared, lonely person that I once was- it can be really surreal thinking about it. (And) there's still a lot of work that I have to do, that's life! It is a constant work-in-progress, editing and modifying as we move forward.
This is where my plug for motivating that person who was (as I was) comes in. It is going to be an absolute ***** and for a long time you will question why you even get up in the morning. Then a success comes and it feels great! You feel a little less anxious and there is a glimmer of hope. That hope has a sort of snowball effect that soon makes you try harder to over-come your disorder. Plus it gets easier to quell the little self-loathing inner-voice. You start to internalize therapy, speaking becomes easier and more casual. Then maintaining a productive outlook becomes easier, not easy, but easier. It is a *****, but it is worth all of the effort. I wake up some mornings just smiling. No longer being trapped by the confines of your mind, it is a liberation beyond words!!! One more exclamation point!
*keep in mind that it is 3:26 a.m. and I am having difficulty sleeping. This post will most likely be horribly disjointed!
"Courage is not the absence of fear. It is acting in spite of it." --Mark Twain